I cannot tell you how excited I was to stumble upon Utterly Ugly Portraits on Instagram. If you love these as much as I do, you have a twisted sense of humor and we should be besties! If you don’t think these portraits are funny and cute, you seriously need to check yourself!
Utterly Ugly Portraits is literally the funniest thing we could ever hope to gift someone! I definitely bought one for my husband for Christmas and I can’t wait to see the look on his face when he opens it! (He better have it framed and on his work desk within 12 hours.) We love supporting small business owners and especially artists with a twist.
How did you get started with your business?
I was in a bit of a rut last year, I had just finished my latest contract of a super demanding full time job and crashed hard over the Christmas holiday. I had a month until my next contract was due to begin and I was so tired and burnt out I didn’t want to do anything productive. I think my partner was getting concerned I would get stuck in a Netflix coma so she encouraged me to do something more productive with my tablet. I had bought the tablet a few years back specifically for my digital art but I was fresh out of inspiration.
The dog who has the most going on is Mannie, (American Foxhound Mix). He’s 3 years old but acts like a 16-year old teenage diva, which is why we love him. Knight is a Havanese firecracker that usually keeps the office and Mannie on our toes.
In a last ditch attempt to get me to pick up the pen my partner asked me to do a portrait of her family. As a joke I made it as hideous as possible. When I presented the monstrosity to her she thought it was hilarious. Any really encouraged me to do some more of my friends and family for a laugh. Within a couple of days of just posting them on my social media pages I was starting to get requests from people I didn’t know. And it just kind of snowballed from there.
Tell us about your pet(s)!
Sadly I don’t currently have my own dog. I share my aunties dog when I’m in the UK. She’s a gorgeous greyhound that we rescued a few years ago when my dog Luna the lurcher sadly passed away. Luna was definitely my dog. When they say, owners are like their dogs that was certainly true with Luna and I. I’m desperate to have another dog but as my partner and I travel a lot it wouldn’t be fair at this moment in time.
Growing up we had a small zoo. Dogs, cats, chickens, rabbits, guinea pigs, gerbils and a tortoise.
What and who influences your work?
The subjects of my portraits influence my work. I strongly advise my clients to tell me about who/what I’m drawing. What sort of personality they have, or any funny quirks that I can include in the portrait. That way it really feels personal to them and always gives that extra laugh. I love the fact that anything goes, and I can have total creative freedom. My clients get a real kick out of their final product and a lot of laughs.
What is/are your favorite pet brands and why?
I can’t say specifically what pet brands have been my favourites. When I had Luna I would go to a lot of local pet/animal shows with her as she was a real social dog. I would love to buy the handmade beautiful collars and huge fluffy dog beds. Or gourmet dog treats that people have made themselves. I’m a big believer in supporting small local businesses. When I started Utterly Ugly Portraits I very quickly got swept up into the pet world on social media, so when I get my next dog I will definitely be supporting the local businesses on Instagram for the goodies.
2020 has been a female dog… What do you have planned for your company in 2021?
2020 certainly has been very tough for the world. For me I have to consider myself lucky. When I took my next work contract, covid hit and as soon as I got back into the swing of work I lost my job. I was so lucky that I had Utterly Ugly Portraits to start really building up. I threw all of my time and resources into it and realised I could start doing this full time from the safety of my own home. Moving into the new year, I hope to continue building the business and steadily building my fan base. I am considering looking into doing some merchandise and some other dreams fir the business in the further future.
How can people support you and your business?
Tell all your friends and family about me! A follow on Instagram and a like on Facebook goes a really long way. And when you see a portrait that really makes you chuckle, give it a share. And most of all, inviting your friends to my pages makes a huge difference.
Oh, and of course buying a portrait. 😉
Where can people find you (website, social handles, stores)?
I’m in the process of getting my website sorted but for now you can find me.
Personally, I think these portraits are the funniest thing ever and want to buy them for everyone I know that has a sense of humor! It’s the perfect gift for Father’s Day too! (Because we know your beau is just as obsessed with your dogs as you are. Don’t let him hide it!)